Well, I suppose really I should not be contributing to Zero Waste Week, if you get my meaning! Have you heard of the challenge? Environmental waste management is a big deal in the Green household, because my husband is a Chartered Waste Manager. Therefore, he scrutinizes every item that we use, he monitors the products we buy (and refuses to purchase items with excessive, unrecyclable packaging), and he tries to encourage reuse as often as possible.
When I received the Zero Waste Week newsletter inviting us to do a waste audit, I decided that wasn’t really an issue for me. As a family of four, we dispose of just one black plastic bin-bag of general waste each fortnight. Our biggest waste challenge is plastic food containers and cardboard packaging, but we recycle almost all of it. But there is an area that I feel needs improvement. I am the only person in our household that eats salad, and I often throw out half a bag of the stuff because I cannot eat it quickly enough before it spoils and goes soggy.
My solution to the salad issue is a little wild, quite literally. I like the idea of foraging for food, just like our ancient ancestors used to. I want to break free from the supermarkets, and find my own natural, vegetarian food. I just haven’t been brave enough, because from a young age I have been taught that anything growing wild could be poisonous, or carries germs, or is otherwise bad for me. That is a cultural issue, I believe. There are lots of green plants, berries and flowers growing alongside the canal and river in my hometown, and most of those contain edible components.
So here is my challenge, and this seems the best time of year to try it out, with Autumn fast approaching and all those winter fruits and berries beginning to ripen. I will seek out overgrown and little used places, and I will attempt to forage for foods that can accompany my meals. I’m not sure how successful I will be, or indeed when I will try it out, but that is my plan. Watch this space for updates!
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Wow! Seriously impressed with your general waste for a whole family. I am quite satisfied with myself when I can do that on my own. I’m originally from Sweden so have been recycled almost for as long as I can remember, but in later years I have realised that is not enough I am now making a conscious effort to buy less from the start.
My mission is to count non-recyclable coffee cups I use to the end of the year and I have noticed already that I avoid buying coffee if I don’t have my reusable mug with me as I don’t want to put another mark on my calendar.
Well done! Those coffee cups are a major waste headache. We take a flask with us on day trips and outings to try and reduce consumption, and we do recycle the packaging from our takeaway treats.
Wow, one bin bag a fortnight! I try to buy veg from the greengrocers (paper bags) and meat and fish from the butcher and fishmonger (paper or palstic wrapping), but can’t always manage this. Those plastic food trays drive me nuts! They fill up the kitchen bin so quickly and are not recycled in our area. That said, I understand that some packaging actually reduces food waste. For example, I used to complain about the plastic wrap on cucumbers but apparently they save a huge amount of product from damage and therefore waste. It’s so difficult though, to get the right balance. Sounds like you’re doing really well. Had no idea it was zero waste week.
Thanks! I have my husband to thank for our waste management, he was nicknamed “Swampy” back when he worked on the household waste sites in Manchester! Well, now you know about Zero Waste Week, we are spreading the word 😉